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Renewable Energy

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POSTER: Diversifying the Solar Workforce Through Inclusive Apprenticeships

By Renewable Energy No Comments
Check out the “Diversifying the Solar Workforce Through Inclusive Apprenticeships” poster below to understand the growing employment opportunities in solar energy for people with disabilities. This poster was presented at the American Solar Energy Society’s SOLAR 2022 conference, which focused on “Energy Transition with Economic Justice.” The event was attended by hundreds of solar industry professionals and academics, many of whom spoke with PIA about how solar energy organizations can take steps to make their workforce development activities more inclusive of people with disabilities. We encourage you to use this graphic to better understand how the solar industry can create inclusive apprenticeship programs that build a talent pipeline and create jobs for people with disabilities. At the American Solar Energy Society’s SOLAR 2022 conference in June 2022, PIA submitted a paper entitled “Diversifying the Solar Workforce Through Inclusive Apprenticeships.” The paper was revised by industry scholars who accepted the article, which was published by Springer in the “Proceedings of the American Solar Energy Society National Conference.” Download the Poster
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Two men working on solar panel instalation

Diversifying the solar workforce through inclusive apprenticeships

By Renewable Energy No Comments
This article is reprinted from Solar Power World with the permission of the editor. According to the United States Energy and Employment Report (USEER) 2021, much of the clean energy sector experienced job losses during the COVID-19 pandemic, and the solar industry saw an 8% decline in jobs. In 2020, the industry began rebounding, bringing an influx of 560,000 jobs into the energy sector and a continued need for solar workers. As we turn the corner into 2022, experts anticipate continued growth in solar jobs. A recent study from the U.S. Department of Energy projects that the solar industry will employ between 500,000 and 1.5 million American workers by 2035. Though increasingly optimistic about the future outlook, many industry leaders face major hurdles to recruit and hire experienced candidates to fill the growing number of clean energy jobs. As outlined in the 2021 USEER report, 88% of companies in the electric power generation sector reported: “It was either somewhat difficult (69%) or very difficult (20%) to find new employees.” At the same time, the energy sector is “less diverse than the nation as a whole,” and employers are seeking ways to build diverse, equitable, inclusive and accessible workplaces. Apprenticeship programs that are designed to...
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Two men working on solar panel instalation

New Florida milestone highlights the value of apprenticeships for the solar industry

By Renewable Energy No Comments
This article is reprinted from Solar Power World with the permission of the editor. Registered apprenticeship programs (RAPs) are a proven workforce development tool that is employer-driven and worker-centric. They provide a pathway for new employees to earn an entry-level salary while learning the trade through a combination of on-the-job training and related classroom instruction, with progressive wage increases as they learn and gain experience. Apprenticeships can also help grow the solar workforce at a time when demand for workers is high and our industry will need to grow significantly to meet clean energy and climate targets. There are many additional benefits of registered apprenticeship programs, including access to tax credits, tuition and wage reimbursement, GI Bill housing allowances and other financial incentives. Unfortunately, solar apprenticeship programs have historically been limited because key solar jobs are not yet recognized as “apprenticeable” by the U.S. Department of Labor. A recent milestone in Florida underscores the value of solar apprenticeships and complements an existing effort among industry stakeholders to develop standards that would enable this option across the country. Florida creates a solar installer registered apprenticeship program The Florida Solar Energy Center (FSEC) and Florida Solar Energy Industries Association (FlaSEIA) worked together...
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How Inclusive Apprenticeships Can Help Address the Clean Energy Sector’s Growing Talent Needs

By Apprenticeship for All Podcast, Renewable Energy No Comments

Episode 11: Amanda Bybee, CEO of Amicus Solar Cooperative Amanda Bybee, CEO of Amicus Solar Cooperative and recognized leader in the clean energy sector, discusses career opportunities and access to high-growth, high-demand jobs in the solar energy sector and the industry’s commitment to creating a more diverse and inclusive pipeline of talent to fill their workforce needs.

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Hiring and Retaining Apprentices with Disabilities

By Renewable Energy No Comments

Apprenticeship.gov provides information and resources on the basics of apprentices, hiring and retaining apprentices with disabilities, and the apprenticeship Equal Employment Opportunity (EEO) regulations that support inclusive workplaces. Resources are also available on potential career paths to pursue through apprenticeship and case studies targeted toward employers on the benefits of apprenticeships.

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Advancing Inclusion Through Clean Energy Jobs

By Renewable Energy No Comments

With the push for “green jobs,” this analysis by the Brookings Institute is designed to help energy-sector professionals, state and local policymakers, regional education and training sector leaders, and community organizations get a clearer look at the nature, needs, and opportunities associated with the future clean energy workforce. This analysis explores the extent to which such occupations will offer inclusive pathways to economic opportunity.

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